It appears that Democrats in the Missouri Senate have successfully stopped legislation that would have redefined what constitutes a maintenance project and exempted those being done on public property from the state's prevailing wage requirement.
The Missouri Senate has passed a House bill that would overhaul the state's prevailing wage for public works projects.
Under current state law, the prevailing wage paid to workers of a certain trade is calculated based on surveys from contractors on a public works project. The bill approved by the Senate Monday night would instead require wage surveys to be split between union and non-union employers, and the prevailing wage would be set by the group that reported more hours of work.
Legislation that would eliminate the prevailing wage requirement in Missouri was heard Tuesday by a State Senate committee.
The state calculates various wages that are to be paid in each county and in St. Louis for construction trades on building projects. The sponsor, State Senator Dan Brown (R, Rolla), says eliminating prevailing wage requirements would give smaller businesses outside of St. Louis and Kansas City a fair shot at landing construction contracts.
Well over a thousand labor union members rallied outside the State Capitol Tuesday against various bills in the General Assembly they say is anti-worker.
In particular, they oppose legislation that would suspend the prevailing wage law in tornado-ravaged Joplin and other parts of Missouri declared to be federal disaster areas. Governor Jay Nixon (D) spoke at the rally, accusing Republican lawmakers and their backers of attacking working people in Missouri.